Château de Brissac, by Charles-André de Brissac

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The Château de Brissac, located in the Brissac-Quincé area of Maine-et-Loire, France, boasts a rich history that dates back to the 11th century. Initially built by the Counts of Anjou, it underwent significant transformations over the centuries. In the 15th century, it was rebuilt by Pierre de Brézé, a minister to King Charles VII. The château gained prominence in the 16th century under René de Cossé, who was appointed governor of Anjou and Maine by King Francis I.

The château played a notable role during the French Wars of Religion and was significantly damaged. It was later granted to Charles II de Cossé by King Henry IV, who provided funds for its reconstruction in 1611, making it the tallest château in France. The property reflected the Baroque architectural style of the 17th century. Throughout its history, the château has been closely tied to the Cossé family, with its current owner, Charles-André de Cossé-Brissac, being the 14th Duke of Brissac.

The château has seven stories and is renowned for its luxurious gilded theatre, which hosts the annual Val de Loire festival. It’s also open for public tours and overnight stays in its guest rooms. During the mid-1990s, the Château de Brissac was featured in the Japanese television show “Iron Chef”.

An intriguing aspect of the château’s history is the legend of the ‘Green Lady’, said to be the ghost of Charlotte de Brézé, the illegitimate daughter of King Charles VII. She was reportedly murdered by her husband, Jacques de Brézé, after being caught in an affair, and her ghost is said to haunt the château, particularly the tower room of the chapel.

For those interested in exploring this majestic piece of French history, the Château de Brissac offers a unique glimpse into the past, blending architectural splendor with intriguing historical narratives